Wellbeing information & remote working guide

Our aim at Rotheram Carrington Group is to support you through these challenging times.

How to avoid remote overwork burnout: What can you do to prevent it during the COVID 19 crisis

These unprecedented times have left most of the nation under lockdown.  We may be feeling anxious and worried about our own health, as well as the health and wellbeing of our loved ones.

In addition, this has had a huge impact on our professional lives, where businesses are feeling the pressure and employees feel the need to be more responsive and effective.  Yet this is tricky, when we have limited ability to have quick face to face conversations with colleagues, technology may not be reliable and for many, there are the additional responsibilities of family live and home schooling to consider.

There are various reports indicating that employee workday hours have increased by an average of 2 hours – and for many this may well be more.

The negative impacts of overworking are numerous.  Impacting your mental health, at a time which is already emotionally trying, as well as adversely impacting your physical health, through stress and lack of sleep.  With both your mental and physical health being continuously overworked, it will in time lead to reduced concentration in your work and ultimately a drop in production.

As these lines between our personal and professional lives blur, like never before, to help to try and avoid burnout:

Set boundaries – set yourself a space devoted to work. Consider a supportive chair and an area with good lighting.  Clear communication around work start and finish times, with the people that you live with. Staying focused and distraction free, with children in the household, can certainly be tricky. So, if possible, trying to share parental responsibilities and producing a rota that allows both parties to work.  Passing this information to your team and manager, keeps lines of communication open whilst you are available and not focused on family.

Prioritise tasks for the day – be clear on the areas of focus for the day.  Establish a list showing urgent key areas for you or your team.  Marking them off on completion, will give a greater sense of achievement and hopefully mean that you will log off at a reasonable hour and enjoy the remainder of the day

Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’ – In these challenging times, priorities and areas of focus will shift. So, you need to have the confidence to say no to tasks that aren’t going to help you, or the business achieve what is important right now. Whilst you may want to please people, taking too much on, could overwhelm.  So, by being realistic with your tasks and offering a partial solution could help.

Don’t skip breaks – have a designated area to eat and take time away from your workspace, will allow you to feel that you are having an actual break.  Hence, you will turn more focused and motivated.

Try and stick to your normal daily working hours – be disciplined in leaving your workspace and don’t return until the next day. Whilst it may be tempting to put in extra hours during the early morning or late at night, this will disrupt your sleep pattern, depleting your energy levels.

Switch off your work phone and log off from your machine – if this isn’t possible, try and limit yourself to checking your work emails once or twice.

Take time for yourself – it is important that you enable your mind to know that you are no longer working. Do some exercise, spend time with the household or even take a relaxing bath – ideally in a different room to your workspace.  In time, this will become your new routine and will signal to your mind that the workday is over.

Focus on the positives and what you have to be grateful for – speaking with loved ones remotely regularly.  Look at tasks you now have the time to complete around the house. These welcome distractions will allow you to use your time in a healthy and productive way, rather than overworking.

By adopting simple but effective measures like above, you will better shield yourself from the dangerous consequences of overworking during this challenging time for all of us.

We are all in this together, so take care and wishing you and your loved ones all the best, from the team at Rotheram Carrington Group.